Thousands of years passed since the wheel invention till the appearance of the first engine. 20 years lie between the appearance of the first computer and the creation of the internet. But the speeds are totally different since then because every technological breakthrough creates opportunities for appearance of not the one but several new inventions. Sometimes we think the life did not change at lot during the last 10-15 years. But let’s remember the technological products were born during that time dedicated to change our reality.
YouTube was founded in the cold February day in 2005 by three PayPal beginners – Chad Harley, Steven Chen and Javed Karim. Just in one year the service was purchased by Google for 1,65 billion US dollars.
There are several versions why YouTube was created. Ones will tell you the service was initially meant for partner search just like Hot or Not but with video. The other will assume they were building the visual library starting from Javed Karim who were desperate to find any videos of Janet Jackson from Supercun 2004 show. It could be that the founders already forgot the reasons for creation of the today’s most popular video site.
But they created new opportunities. The video blogging was born, ordinary people started to create kind of media and to make money from it.
There are about 300 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute. So it’s safe to say that YouTube now is a real competitor of the television. And with no doubts the best video hosting at the moment.
2006, Facebook for everyone
Officially Facebook was launched on the 4th of February in 2004. But only in 2006 the service became accessible for everyone. Initially the network was created for a small group of Harvard students and was limited with the resources of the university. But later it became accessible for other students, first for the students of Stanford university and then for the ones from the Ivy League.
MySpace was a direct competitor, but Facebook took his place very quickly by growing very fast deep and far. Only one year after Facebook became accessible for everyone Mark Zuckerberg became a billionaire and his company is estimated in 100 billion dollars.
Now Facebook is still one of the most popular websites. Recently the number of its users rised above 2 billions and its market value exceeds 200 billion dollars.
Twitter was created in March 2006 and officially launched in June 2006. The term micro blogging were born together with the site because the post on Twitter cannot go beyond the limit of 140 symbols, or twitts. Before Twitter people expressed their opinion in blogs and lead broad discussions, but Twitter changed the direction to short and quick posts.
It became more convenient to share a link simply by posting a couple of words about it, just like “OMG what did I read recently!” Twitter made blogging easier. You don’t always need to write a long post about all the situation but you want to share something. “Hi everybody, I’m on Harley show now, is anyone else around?” – comments, likes, retwitts – and in two minutes you see old friends you did not see for hundreds of years coming to you.
Exactly such quick widespread of information was a breakthrough element for Twitter. During political unrest in Greece, Moldavia, Libya, Tunis, Egypt and other countries Twitter was used as a platform for reports, protest organization and even for official media coverage.
2007, Amazon Kindle
The first generation of Kindle was issued on the 19th of november 2007 for the price of 399 dollars.
All the items were sold out just in 6 hours and the remaining time till April 2008 all users could see “not available” only. Maybe it was the most revolutionary product in the last 10 years, because it was exactly Kindle which totally changed our way of reading.
Books, magazines, newspapers travelled constantly in a small and cosy corpus of a e-book. Initially Kindle had a 6 inch screen and a memory of 250 MB. Whispernet was the main feature provided Kindel with such popularity. This is an opportunity to download, read and store publications using a 3G connection.
2009, Google Maps Turn-by-turn Navigation
Engine and personal navigation systems already existed at the time but Google conducted a revolution among portative GPS as it announced public beta version of Google Maps Navigation on the 28th October 2009.
What made this product special? Now users of a navigation system could come along without downloading additional applications with new maps and did not have to buy new CD in order to update addresses data.
An update with a 3G connection looks so ordinary and even a bit outdated now. When all these applications will run updates by themselves? But eight years ago only Google Maps could do it. And exactly that principle is being used in all models of modern smartphones.
2010, Apple iPad
Till 2010 there were several trials of intermediates between smartphone and notebook. And they were used somewhere. For instance, Newton MessagePad 100, the first Apple product among tablets, has only several functions in 1993. You could only make notes and calculations on this device. But hardly someone could call this device indispensable.
2010 has changed everything by becoming the triumph of the long way to the top. Steve Jobs was working on iPad during 20 years and made this idea the highest priority for himself and for the company. But the technology available at the time did not allow to realize his project.
In 1983 Jobs was talking about the simplicity of Apple strategy. The idea was to put a very good computer in a book. And everyone should be able to learn how to run it just in 20 minutes.
The constant connection to radio waves should provide an access to bigger databases and other computers in the way that a user should not take along anything else besides this device. Sounds like iPad, right?
Even if you think Instagram has landed to this list by mistake and his appearance did not change our reality, take a closer look to this application. Instagram conducted a revolution in mobile photography and became a second biggest service for image storage after Facebook. But it’s more than that. The main feature became the opportunity to quickly edit and apply filters to ordinary pictures made with phone camera. Previously you would need a professional equipment for that. Now users were able not only to share pictures but also to comment it and create own trends and change the whole principle of mobile photography.
But the most revolutionary aspect of Instagram is not technical but economical. In 2012 Instagram became the best known application with a value of 1 billion dollars. That was the price Facebook purchased it for. It was the beginning of the era of enormously expensive applications. WhatsApp costs 19 billion dollars, Waze costs 1 billion dollars, Snapchat costs 3 billion dollars. This list is big and still growing.
A new business was born: development of applications with purpose of selling it later on to internet giants. It had influence of the Silicone Valley and the whole technological world. Now smartphone applications are being sold to those who change the future of the market with their assistance.
2013, Short Form Video
Vine is a first applications for short videos. But hardly anyone knows this name, the company Vine started in 2012 was bought by Twitter even before the official launch of the application.
The Vine application let users download short 6-seconds videos on the mobile platform so it can be easily shared with friends through social networks. The service officially started to work on 24th of January 2013 supported by iOS devices. But the pioneers did not remain at the forefront for a long time. Soon Instagram introduced the opportunity to upload short videos with 15 seconds length. Videos could be placed both on the platform and in other social networks.
As statistics shows the age of users of both applications does not exceed 35 years. That means the market will face soon a new solution, simple and comfortable for users of any age.
2014, Google Glass
Let’s face it, Google Glass is not the most successful business project. It was really hard for Google to launch the project on the market and internet glasses still are not on a high demand among internet users. Even if this headset for smartphones is supported with modified Android version, with gyroscopes, accelerometer, sensor determining the distance and even with an opportunity to make a HD video.
This is the second approach of the company to the challenge. Before that Google already tested the market by launching Google Explorers on the 15th of May 2004. After 10 years Google launched a new economically unsuccessful experiment. It is hard to say what is wrong with Google glasses. Maybe the mass of users is not ready to constantly run with computer glasses of the eyes, because it is simply not the same as carry it in the pocket.
But even is the new device from Google did not make a fortune for its creators it already has its place in the history, physically changed the market of portative electronic devices. Now the developers of every new smartphone or tablet model have to keep in mind breakthrough ideas of Google Glass.